TransMountain Pipeline Spills 50,000 Gallons of Oil on Indigenous Land in British Columbia

June 16, 2020 at 3:38 pm

Sacred Native American land desecrated in Canadian oil spill 

Approximately 50,193 gallons of crude oil in Abbotsford, British Columbia came gushing out of Canada’s Trans Mountain pipeline early Saturday morning, polluting indigenous fields nearby.

All the freestanding oil has been “mopped” up and the company that runs the pipeline is monitoring the groundwater and air quality, but safety concerns among remain.

The spill occurred right over a drinking water aquifer on on the Sumas First Nation reserve.

“With it being on kind of a swampy area, my big concern is seepage into the ground, and I’m wondering if people are taking into account the cumulative effects of something like that,” said Chief Dalton Silver. “We cannot continue to have our land desecrated by oil spills.”

This is the fourth time in 15 years that the pipeline has spilled on his people’s land.

While the cause of the spill is still under investigation, the company believes that it may have been a fitting failure on a small one inch pipe.

The federal Transportation Safety Board is investigating the spill separately from TransMountain, and B.C.’s Ministry of Environment called the spill “deeply concerning.”

“Our government maintains that the TMX project poses unacceptable risks to our environment, our coast and our economy,” said the ministry in a statement.

After shutting down for about 36 hours, the pipeline returned to normal operations Sunday afternoon.